A boundary survey is the process of finding, identifying, measuring, and reporting the location of the boundary lines of a tract of land as described in a deed of conveyance. A boundary survey will also indicate the extent of known easements revealed in a deed of conveyance or a title abstract. But more importantly, the boundary survey may also reveal physical matters affecting the use and enjoyment of the property that may not be disclosed not be disclosed otherwise, be it a roadway crossing the property and used by others, a visible utility line crossing the property, or encroachments across the boundaries by fences or other improvements.

The work involved in a boundary survey includes much more than the time spent with on site recovery of existing corners, field measurements, and marking of corners, which is what most people see during a survey. Typically, for each hour required on site, an additional one to two hours is spent per survey completing research of public records, comparing deed descriptions to evidence recovered on site to properly resolve boundaries, resolving final boundary lines, and preparing the final survey plats, descriptions, and reports.

A boundary survey is recommended any time a significant investment is made in property, whether it be the initial purchase of the land, or the addition or altercation of improvements thereon. Unfortunately, many people assume that a survey is a required and included in their real estate transaction. However, in order to keep closing costs to a minimum, most agents involved in the transaction, will not recommend a survey. After the closing and a problem or dispute arises, it is not uncommon to find that the previous owners, their neighbors, or their selling agents have an uninformed, and often, wrong perception of where the bounds a parcel of land are located. A boundary survey prior to the closing can potentially save thousands of dollars that may be spent resolving issues that would have been revealed during the course of a boundary survey, on top of the hours of added stress and heart ache.

As a minimum, PLS, Inc. performs all boundary and retracement surveys in accordance with the Standards of Practice for Land Surveyors in the State of Tennessee. In addition, all boundary and retracement surveys are conducted in a manner such that, if circumstances should arise, we would be prepared to defend our resolution and findings in a court of law. This approach is what all surveyors are charged with, regardless of time constraints or budgeting issues. PLS, Inc. realizes that the true value of a survey lies in "getting it right the first time".


For a copy of Tennessee regulations for boundary surveys, visit